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    House overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
JIB House
Gloucester, MA  USA
Only a short slope and a rocky shore separate JIB House from the Atlantic Ocean. Such a spectacular perch—and lack of serious heightrestrictions—should have made our job of creating an airy interior withsweeping views a straightforward one. Not so. Our clients were determined thattheir new contemporary house not obstruct their neighbors’ views. Our solutionwas to survey neighbors, map their views and generate graphically athree-dimensional building envelope, which allowed us to determine the maximum height and mass of the house. While a concession to the neighborhood, it did not force us to compromise on our clients’ wishes for high ceilings, expansive views and open spaces. Here, we’re aided by the sloping angle of the site,which allowed us to stretch the height waterside to three stories without exceeding the building envelope.

Seen from the surrounding landscape, JIB House is a hybrid: Landside, the house is low and an understated presence among its more traditional neighbors; it buffers wind and salt spray, creating an intimate south-facing courtyard through which visitors approach. Opposite, the house opens dramatically as the slope drops and the roof rises like a sail; the northside is a three-story wall of windows. A large folding roof plane on the western side creates a bold form that offers shade when the sun is in the southwest. Below, we sited a pool close to the ocean to connect swimmers with the water beyond.